Call to grow areca nut as intercrop with oil palm

Call to grow areca nut as intercrop with oil palm
Highlights

With fluctuations in the prices of oil palm bunches, the Horticulture Department of East Godavari has initiated measures to financially support the community by suggesting growing areca nut as intercrop along with their oil palm cultivation.

The move aims to provide long-term financial returns for farmers who rely on oil palm cultivation

Kakinada: With fluctuations in the prices of oil palm bunches, the Horticulture Department of East Godavari has initiated measures to financially support the community by suggesting growing areca nut as intercrop along with their oil palm cultivation.

They say this move will provide long-term financial returns to farmers, once the crop yield starts for a period of nearly 30 years on par with oil palm. This maiden combination of areca nut and oil palm cultivation is suggested by the officials in district after it provided good financial returns in Kerala.

For this purpose, altogether 100 hectares of land was chosen in three upland mandals, Prathipadu, Jaggampeta and Gandepalli. About 200 areca nut plants are permitted per hectare in oil palm cultivation.

As far as incentives are concerned, the farmers will be provided with a special package of Rs 32,000 per hectare in two instalments of Rs12,000 and Rs 20,000. Rs 5,000 will be paid for areca nut as intercrop. The incentives will be paid on periodical basis as the arena nut crop takes four years to reach yielding stage.

Once the crop yield starts, it continues for 30 years. After 8 years of crop yield, another intercrop cocoa can also be included in the areas of oil palm cultivation.

East Godavari Horticulture Assistant Director K Gopi Kumar said the areca nut is being recommended as intercrop keeping in view of long-term interests and to provide them better financial returns. The areca nut as intercrop has good market with oil palm as main source of income for as many as 30 years once the crop yield begins, the AD clarified.

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